SYDNEY estate agents will be seeking out buyers who’ll be here from China next week on potential fly’n’buy visits.
The National Day Golden Week is China’s big holiday when 760 million Chinese workers are able to take a week off every October.
For China’s rich and wealthy, the Golden Week provides the perfect time to head overseas for holidays, shopping, university visits along with the pursuit of property.
The Chinese strongly believe in generational investments, and property is deemed a safe and lasting asset to pass down for generations, especially if it’s with freehold ownership rights like Australia.
Ctrip, the online travel portal, is predicting more than six million Chinese travellers to head overseas during the break which kicks off tomorrow through to October 8.
Australia is the fifth most popular destination for these Chinese holidayers behind Thailand, Japan, the US and Singapore.
New air routes help our popularity, the property website Juwai suggested, combined with easier and cheaper visas for outbound Chinese travellers.
Chinese incomes have seen sustained growth in recent times with an estimated 135 million travellers through this year. Sun, sea, sand, blue skies, stunning natural environment and wildlife — think whale-watching, swimming with dolphins, and hugging koalas — are some of the draw cards behind the steady growth in tourist arrivals.
The number of Chinese visitors to Australia has hit around 1.4 million annually, so although we only receive a very small percentage of all Chinese visitors, the numbers are sufficient to impact the property market.
Golden Week 2015 saw a Maroubra home sold for $10.5 million to a Chinese couple, who flew in to seal the deal. There was a $39 million Point Piper sale in 2014.
High prices in China often make our cities a better value proposition.
These Chinese buyers are faced with their own domestic restrictions limiting buyer’s opportunities, so many mainland property buyers will be looking overseas for investment opportunities, although there are restrictions on getting their money out of China too.
This didn’t stop Chinese real estate investors spending a record $101 billion last year globally on both residential and commercial properties — up 845 per cent over the last five years, and 25 per cent up on 2015.
The US is considered top spot by most property investors from China, which explains the $50 billion spent by Chinese buyers on American real estate.
Australia comes in at second, followed by Hong Kong, Canada, and the UK, Juwai recently noted.
Face matters in China, in a society ever conscious of reputation and hierarchy. There is no better way to do that than buy a home to show off their wealth and investment acumen to family and friends, and owning international property gains even further prestige.
By JONATHAN CHANCELLOR
The Daily Telegraph